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Tornado Troops

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Updated: 4/30/2014 4:32 pm
TUPELO, Miss. (WTVA)- The people who wear army boots have seen their share of devastation, and damage from recent storms is no different.

"It's basically like a war zone in these areas. A lot of peoples houses are just taken away," says Srgt. Jimmy Hutchinson with the Mississippi National Guard.

What is different is this week the devastation hits home.

"These soldiers are citizen soldiers they are your friends and family and neighbors," says Col. Roger Johnson with the Mississippi National Guard.

On April 28th, duty called and even though some of these men and women had damage of their own to deal with, the soldiers showed up to work.

"In uniform they are there to provide support to those families, those communities, those city leaders, those governments," Johnson says.

In this situation, their job means staying overnight in dangerous disaster areas and protecting and serving the community.

"Without any power they don't have any security. We've been that security and the eyes on the location keeping people out of those areas," Hutchinson says.

"Were doing all we can to get citizens electricity back, provide security, and just restore things back to normalcy," Johnson says.

While on the job, these soldiers say they can't help but be amazed by some of the stories they've heard from families they've spoken with, especially when it could have been any one of them.

Hutchinson says one family, who was luckily not in their home, had a story that stuck out to him.

"They said one of the things they always did was get in a certain bathroom in a tub. They can't even find the tub in the location. They were watched over greatly," Hutchinson explains.

Riding through neighborhood after neighborhood with loss all around, the soldiers, like so many others, are thankful saying it could have been so much worse.

Gov. Phil Bryant announced the soldiers' service will be extended for an additional 24 hours, bringing the total to 4 days.
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